Typically at each community college and university, there is Veterans Affairs (VA) Counselor or representative the specifically works with military personnel and veterans. Making the transition from soldier to student can be shocking; however with the assistance of your VA counselor, your experience will be a success. If possible, schedule a campus tour at each college or university you’re interested in attending. While on the tour, be sure to find the Veterans Office on campus and introduce yourself. Here are some tips to ensure you cover everything you need:
Get your paperwork organized
You will need documentation of your military service. The Joint Services Transcript is recognized by over 2,300 colleges and universities as official documentation of military training and experiences. Provide any college transcripts, joint services transcripts, and test scores as needed. A good tip – organize all your paperwork in an expanding file. There could be a tab for GI Bill benefits, financial aid, advising, and so forth.
Due to recent changes at the Veterans Affairs, it is now required that all military transcripts are in students’ academic files. To request your military transcripts:
Upon enrolling in classes, you will need to get enrollment certified. While on the tour or visiting your VA advisor, stop by to meet the certifying official. Sometimes the School Certifying Official is located in the Registrar’s Office and may not be the same person as your VA counselor. Eligibility for veteran and dependent education benefits is determined by the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). You will need to provide various documents and complete different forms so your benefits can be received.
Get to know your college
When talking with the VA counselor or college advisor, be sure to review degree options, the college’s policies on using CLEP and military experience (ACE) credits, accreditation, transfer credits, and deployment. In addition, learn more about the college’s veteran support services. Find out if a VA center is available or if there are any education support programs, opportunities to connect with other veterans on campus, and seek out career and job placement services.
Advisors will answer your questions and assist you with:
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